A.M. Update: Florence weakens slightly as approaches NC coast
00:43, Sep 14, 2018
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As of 10am Thursday (local time), Florence's top winds were 177km/h, and it was marching northwest at16km/h, about 257km east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, and 329km east-southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
"Even after Hurricane Florence makes landfall, it's still forecast to just crawl west over SC, gradually weakening to a tropical storm", said FOX 46 Meteorologist Tara Lane.
SC officials say more than 400,000 people have evacuated the state's coast and more than 4,000 people have taken refuge in shelters as Hurricane Florence approaches.
Rain projections also increased, with some locations along the North Carolina coast now expected to get up to 40 inches.
A state of emergency has also been declared in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington.
In total, over 5.25 million people live in areas under hurricane warnings or watches and another 4.9 million people are under tropical storm warnings or watches. "This is an extremely unsafe situation". The centre is slowing down and is expected to stall and perhaps wander around just off shore on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Concern was high enough for the expensive jets that the plane manufacturer flew them all the way across the USA to its main facility outside Seattle, Washington.
AccuWeather Founder and President Dr. Joel N. Myers said: "AccuWeather estimates that Hurricane Florence will cause $30-60 billion in economic impact and damage".
More than 421,000 South Carolinians have already evacuated from the coast, McMaster said.
And while some people may think that Florence doesn't possess the same punch Harvey did since it's only a Category 2 storm, there is a comparison: Sandy.
Florence's maximum sustained winds were clocked on Thursday at 105 miles per hour (165 kph) after it was downgraded to a Category 2 on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, according to the NHC. But Hill said many residents still remained in their homes, possibly hoping to ride out the hurricane.
Just as Hurricane Florence closes in on the Southeast, the area covered by hurricane-force winds has doubled - meaning far more people will get blasted with winds 74 miles per hour or greater.
REUTERS/Chris KeanePeople walk past a boarded up building before Hurricane Florence comes ashore in Carolina Beach, North Carolina, U.S., September 12, 2018. Ahead of what is projected to be massive devastation for several Southeast states, NASA has released high-definition footage of the storm as viewed from the International Space Station above the Atlantic Ocean. "Significant river flooding is expected as a result of excessive rainfall across area hydrologic basins".
"The rain's going to be around for a long time", he said. That same area experienced risky flooding after Hurricane Matthew in 2016.
Usually when a storm approaches the coast, forecasters can tell with ever-increasing accuracy who will get walloped. In Virginia, 245,000 coastal residents were ordered to evacuate.
The storm has pretty much followed the forecast track through now, but the issue will be Thursday or Friday as it nears the coast and the steering currents collapse.
NASA also shared this video-a "stark and sobering" view of Hurricane Florence-shot using a high-definition camera outside the ISS captured.
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